I figured if I was going to ruin anyone's shoes, I'd rather them be my own. Also, since they won't be in the same dye batch as the bridesmaids' and groomsmen's they might not end up the same color, and it would look more intentional for ours to be different than for one groomsman to have a different color than the rest.
I followed this tutorial. I covered the bottom sole, inner sole and the tags with painter's tape, then started to cover that with clear packaging tape. I ran out the packaging tape half way through, so I used duct tape to finish.
I left the solid canvas shoes in for 8 minutes before pulling out one and rinsing it in cold water. I wanted to make sure the color wouldn't lighten too much when rinsed. It didn't, so I pulled out and rinsed the other one, as well. The crochet shoes didn't seem to be absorbing the dye as fast, so I left them in for 30 minutes.
A few notes on things I plan to do differently when I dye the rest of the shoes: the clear packaging tape came right off while soaking in the dye. The duct tape did stick, but the painter's tape alone did a sufficient job of protecting the parts I wanted left un-dyed, so I don't think another layer of tape is necessary.
In fact, the painter's tape stuck a little too well to the inner soles. When I peeled it off, it pulled out the sole and peeled off some of the text that's printed on the sole. Next time, I won't bother taping this part at all for four reasons: it didn't prevent the leather from getting wet, actually damaged the shoe by pulling out the sole, no one will be able to tell if the sole is dyed when the shoe is being worn, and taping that area was the most tedious part.
Also, I will wear gloves next time. My hand is going to be orange for many days.
Since it was raining outside, I used hooks to hang the shoes inside the bucket I used for dying. This preventing orange-tinged water from staining my bath tub, and kept the shoes out of the water that dripped off of them.
As you can tell, most of the dye rinsed out of the crochet shoes. I'm assuming whatever type of material they are made from just isn't as absorbent. I don't hate the color they ended up as, but I will throw them in the dye when I do the next batch to see if they become any darker.
You can see a few spots where dye got on the outer sole. Not a big deal to me.
Chico and Chubby made sure things didn't get too rowdy while I was photographing the finished shoes.